Animal Defenders International


Animal Defenders International

Lion Ark Selected For 2014 Sedona International Film Festival

Posted: 18 February 2014. Updated: 18 February 2014

Award-winning animal rescue film Lion Ark is one of 145+ independent films selected for the 2014 Sedona International Film Festival (February 22 – March 2, 2014). Celebrating more than 19 years of screenings and educational workshops, The Sedona International Film Festival is considered one of the top regional festivals in the nation. Named the “Fest to Impress” by MovieMaker Magazine, the festival has featured a number of Academy Award-nominated films. Past festival guests and honorees include Michael Moore, Jane Seymour, Peter Fonda, Nick Nolte, Ed Asner, and Ted Danson. This year’s nine-day festival will also feature special appearances by country music superstar Brad Paisley and world-famous actress Stefanie Powers (Hart to Hart).

Described by critics as “uplifting” and “the feel-good movie of the year,” Lion Ark has taken the film festival circuit by storm with sell out shows at Raindance London, Mill Valley Film Festival, and Starz Denver Film Festival. The film has also been awarded Audience Choice Best Documentary at San Diego Film Festival, Best Documentary at Sun & Sand Film & Music Festival, and an Audience Choice Award at Anchorage International Film Festival. Most recently, Lion Ark was nominated for Outstanding International Motion Picture by the prestigious 45th NAACP Image Awards.

What is engaging audiences in a new way is that Lion Ark is more action adventure style than traditional documentary. The film tells the story of a team from Animal Defenders International (ADI) that secured a ban on animal circuses in Bolivia, and then, when the circuses defied the law, set about rescuing every animal.

Lion Ark is all live action and commentary, close up and personal, right in the thick of the rescue. As close as you get to these animals, understanding them and the effects of circus life. See the undercover investigations that changed a continent; the lobbying; the enforcement of the circus animal ban in Bolivia. Circuses that defy the new law are tracked down, animals saved, and a joyous finale sees 25 lions airlifted to freedom in Colorado.

The rescue was funded by Emmy award-winning TV host Bob Barker who, together with Lion Ark Associate Producer, ADI Ambassador and CSI actress Jorja Fox appears in the film and explains the reasons for the rescue and their feelings about the arrival of the lions.

Lion Ark screens at Sedona International Film Festival on Thursday, February 27, 2014 at 6:00 pm (Mary D. Fisher Theatre) and Saturday, March 1, 2014 at 9:00 am (Harkins 1, Harkins Theaters). Each screening will be followed by a Q&A with the film’s director Tim Phillips and producer Jan Creamer, who will be available for interviews before and after the screenings.

Tim Phillips, Director of Lion Ark says: “Lion Ark is deliberately close-up and personal, you are in there with the rescuers. We made the film from live footage and the story is told by the people who were there. It shows what people can do when they get together and decide to take action. The response from audiences has been fantastic.”



High resolution stills from Lion Ark and broadcast quality one minute clips of scenes are available on request.

See the Lion Ark Trailer online at:

Lori De Waal, 323-462-4122
ADI Films Media Desk 323-804-9920

FEBRUARY 27th: Sedona International Film Festival
6:00 pm at Mary D. Fisher Theatre, followed by Q&A with Jan Creamer and Tim Phillips.
2030 W. State Route 89A, Suite A-3, Sedona, AZ 86336
Click here for more information.
(Individual ticket sales begin Monday, February 17, 2014)

MARCH 1st: Sedona International Film Festival
9:00 am at Harkins 1, Harkins Theaters, followed by Q&A with Jan Creamer and Tim Phillips.
2081 W. Highway 89A, Sedona, AZ 86336
Click here for more information.
(Individual ticket sales begin Monday, February 17, 2014)

“a spunky account of a perilous rescue mission...Lion Ark proceeds with refreshing unpredictability.”
– Jeannette Catsoulis, The New York Times

“Compelling cinema verité”
– Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter

“If you enjoy movies filled with suspense, thrills, surprises, adventure and action, put Lion Ark on your must-see list. For me, Lion Ark is the feel-good movie of the year!”
– Betty Jo Tucker, Reel Talk

“heartwarming, beautiful and inspirational. It reminds you of the majestic power of documentary filmmaking and it’s ability to stir true emotion.”
– Justin Bozung, Shock Cinema Magazine / Mondo Film & Video Guide

“…this film should be a target for this year’s Oscars. Excellent.”
– ACED Magazine
“Lion Ark is through and through entertaining…be ready for some up-tempo action-adventure of the most thrilling variety: real-life.”
– Stark Insider

“thoroughly rewarding...”
– TV and Film Review

“Lion Ark is an awe-inspiring journey that grips and engages”
– Britflicks

“Lion Ark takes an already incredible and unforgettable story and breathes life and passion and transformation into of your must-see films of 2013.”
– The Independent Critic

“A consciousness-raising milestone of a documentary”
– Edgar Vaid, The Ecologist

“will restore some faith in humanity”
– JM Willis,

“Lion Ark is a film that will grab your attention and your heart”
– Alexis Higgins, CMR Movie Reviews and News

“ultimately an uplifting story. It’s a revealing documentary with a lot of heart.”
– Jennie Kermode, Eye For Film

“AMAZING! Viewers will be crying tears of joy throughout...”
– Renee Snyder, International Animal Welfare Examiner, The Examiner

More reviews and links to all above reviews are available here

-Sedona International Film Festival
The Sedona International Film Festival, February 22 – March 2, 2014, celebrates more than 19 years of screenings and educational workshops. In that history, the Festival has achieved recognition as a world-class film festival. Each year, audiences and the next generation of filmmakers come together from all over the world to participate in this inspiring celebration of the power of independent film. Luminaries who have been guests and honorees at past festivals include Michael Moore, Connie Stevens, Jerry Stiller, Jane Seymour, Peter Fonda, Doris Roberts, Nick Nolte, Ed Asner, Rick Schroder, Andrew McCarthy, Donald O’Connor, Sean Young, Dean Stockwell, Ted Danson, Mary Steenburgen, Amanda Plummer, Wendy Malick, and many more. The Festival has featured several Academy Award-nominated films, including An Education, Burma VJ, Revanche, The Garden, Genghis Blues, and Spellbound.

- Film Festival Selections & Awards
Nominee, Outstanding International Motion Picture, 45th NAACP Image Awards
Winner Best Documentary (Jury Award), Sun & Sand Film & Music Festival
Winner Audience Choice Best Documentary, San Diego Film Festival
Audience Choice Award, Anchorage International Film Festival
Official Selection Raindance Film Festival, London
Official Selection Mill Valley Film Festival
Official Selection Hawaii International Film Festival
Official Selection Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival
Official Selection Virginia Film Festival
Official Selection Starz Denver Film Festival
Official Selection Irvine International Film Festival
Official Selection Beloit International Film Festival
Official Selection Sedona International Film Festival

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